Google suspends Realtime Search as Twitter deal expires

Google, Twitter won't divulge possible negotiations to renew contract

Google has temporarily suspended its Realtime Search service, and neither Google nor Twitter will say if they're working toward re-establishing an agreement that will have Twitter onboard when the service comes back online.

Google announced on Twitter today that it had temporarily shut down its Realtime Search service while it tries to work the company's new Google+ social networking service into the mix. Google Realtime pulls real-time social networking posts as well as tweets into Google's search results.

The service was disabled early Sunday.

Google has not said how long it expects Realtime Search to be down. In today's tweet, the company only says "stay tuned."

However, working Google+ into the Realtime mix isn't all that pushed Google to disable the search feature.

The day before Realtime Search was yanked, Google's access to Twitter 's tweet stream reached an end. Now, unlike search rival Bing , which still has real-time access to Twitter's traffic flow, Google does not and the company is figuring out its next step.

"Since October of 2009, we have had an agreement with Twitter to include their updates in our search results through a special feed, and that agreement expired on July 2," said a Google spokesman in an email to Computerworld. "While we will not have access to this special feed from Twitter, information on Twitter that's publicly available to our crawlers will still be searchable and discoverable on Google."

It also seems that Google has not ruled out creating another agreement with the micro-blogging site. "Twitter has been a valuable partner for nearly two years, and we remain open to exploring other collaborations in the future," the spokesman added.

Twitter, though, doesn't sound as positive about a future collaboration. Confirming that their tweet-sharing agreement is over, Twitter told Computerworld, "We continue to provide this type of access to Microsoft , Yahoo !, NTT Docomo, Yahoo! Japan and dozens of other smaller developers. And, we work with Google in many other ways."

The microblogging site declined to say if it is negotiating with Google or if it hopes to form a new search partnership in the future.

Sharon Gaudin covers the Internet and Web 2.0, emerging technologies, and desktop and laptop chips for Computerworld. Follow Sharon on Twitter at @sgaudin or subscribe to Sharon's RSS feed . Her e-mail address is .

Read more about web 2.0 and web apps in Computerworld's Web 2.0 and Web Apps Topic Center.

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